Good records can help managers

By Don Bell,2014-06-26 22:54
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Good records can help managers

Good records can help managers: 1make decisions based on fact rather than guesswork 2know what staff

    resources are available to meet production/service requirements 3more accurately assess levels of performance and

    productivity 4know what is happening with absence levels, labor turnover, sickness, accidents, lateness, discipline etc, and take appropriate and timely action.

    Four key reasons why the personnel function must keep up to date records1To keep contact and personal details of

    workers; 2To make more informed decisions for the benefit of the organization and the individual; 3To record

    contractual agreements; 4To adhere to current statutory requirements.

    Purpose of keeping the contact and personal details of workers: 1Details of any organizational changes 2Details of

    decisions about promotional opportunities 3Details of training opportunities 4Changes to contract detailsthis can

    include when the company terminates an employees contract

    Statutory recordseg. 1tax and national insurance 2records of individual hours worked to meet the requirements of

    the Working Time Regulations 1998 3holidays for the Working Time Regulations 1998 4pay to meet the

    requirements of the Minimum Wage Act 1998, and the statutory requirement that workers are issued with pay statements

    5paid sickness and Statutory Sick Pay 6accidents, injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences to meet The Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

    Organizational records: 1. recruitment and selection procedures and results 2.induction and career

    development for individuals 4.sick pay/sick absence 5. Other absence, lateness and labor turnover 6.discipline, including

    dismissals, and grievance 7.termination of employment 8.equal opportunities issues (gender, race, age, disabilities)

    The 1998 Act introduces new restrictions on the holding and processing of what is termed 'sensitive personal data', such

    as racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or other beliefs, whether a member of a trade union, physical or mental health, sexual life, and any court record, or allegations of such.

    The personnel function must ensure that clear consent is obtained in order to process data of a sensitive nature. Also data gathered for one purpose cannot be used for another.

    In addition to being subject to the eight principles above at least one of the following conditions must be

    complied with - there are others, but most relevant in the context of employment are: 1.the worker has given

    their explicit consent to the processing 2.the processing is necessary for the purposes of exercising or performing any right or obligation which is conferred or imposed by law on the employer in connection with employment 3.the

    processing is necessary in connection with any legal proceedings or for the purpose of obtaining legal advice 4.the

    processing is necessary for the administration of justice, for the exercise of functions conferred by statute, or for the exercise of any function of the Crown 5.that if the processing relates to sensitive data as to racial or ethnic origin it is necessary for the purpose of monitoring equality of opportunity or treatment between persons of different racial or ethnic origins with a view to enabling such equality to be promoted or maintained; and is carried out with appropriate safeguards for the rights and freedoms of data subjects.

    Any record keeping system, whether developed within the organization or 'bought in', needs to fulfill certain criteria. It must be: 1accurate, reliable and consistent 2confidential with regard to personal details 3adaptable, so

    that it can cater for future developments and changes 4economical in its introduction, use and maintenance.

    Computer or manual? Computerized record keeping has now become the norm in many organisations, and there is a range of commercial personnel systems available. However smaller organisations may only need to keep a card index system, perhaps with simple forms to keep absence or sickness details. Such forms can be kept in envelopes filed to match the card index.

    Computerization of records can help management by: 1increasing the flexibility of the information available 2

    speeding up the provision of information 3producing cost benefits through administrative savings 4increasing


    Reviewing the systemAs with any system, personnel records should be reviewed from time to time to check their effectiveness. Include the users and operators of the system in the review as they will know the strengths and weaknesses of the system.

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